What’s the difference between SHTF and TEOTWAWKI? There are definitely some differences but we’ll get to that in a minute. First, let’s start with what they have in common- both scenarios entail some form of societal breakdown. It can be anything from an EMP attack to natural disasters such as hurricanes or earthquakes. In both situations, you will need to be prepared for survival and there is no guarantee that your government will provide you with aid or relief any time soon. For those who don’t know, SHTF stands for “shit hits the fan” while TEOTWAWKI stands for “the end of the world as we know it.” So which one should you prepare for? That depends on how likely either scenario is
1. What are your thoughts on the future of SHTF?
2. What do you think would happen if SHTF?
3. Do you trust the government to be able to handle a catastrophe like TEOTWAWKI?
4. How do you prepare for even worst-case scenarios today?
5. Would more people panic in an SHTF event than they would at TEOTWAWKI due to lack of warning systems and preparation, or vice versa?
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I wake up on Presidents Day 2011 to find my satellite channels gone. I had no clue at the time but Annoying! About an hour later, all power in the house went out and Quick Navigation for SHTF or TEOTWAWKI? First satellites then some kind of delay (depending on CME speed) down goes your electric bill due to a big Solar Storm/CME hitting earth.
I was surprised to find that when I tried my cell phone, it worked. Turns out a power line fuse had gone off and about thirty houses lost power for twenty minutes or so – not even really an SHTF event but in those few moments of darkness, lots of things popped into my mind: What if this is TEOTWAWKI? The difference between these events may be subtle at first with law enforcement still around well after the TEOTWAWKI event has begun.
If you’re still not sure.
In many scenarios we won’t know if it is TEOTWAWKI for weeks or months. This can make preparations difficult, so getting it wrong could be problematic and dangerous to your survival. My SHTF moment may become someone else’s TEOTWAWKI event at some point in the future- that person might even be you! For example, when Hurricane Ike hit Houston in 2008 I shared food, firearms and ammo with neighbors on my street because of a possible power outage which would have left us without access to those resources; this was not just another Black Swan event– Hurricane Ike forced me into preparation mode (and caused no small number of other people across Texas). The problem with this situation though is that now my neighbors know about
The Cat II hurricane had a storm surge like a Cat IV and in parts of Bolivar, not even the foundations are left. The point is that one man’s SHTF can turn into another man’s TEOTWAWKI simply because an event morphed into something else. If you have only prepared for what would be considered to be TEOTWAWKI, then your fully tricked out assault rifle may find itself being used when it wasn’t needed during the SHTF; where instead there was no shortage of supplies everywhere due to looting by others who were also unprepared.
You never know what might happen tomorrow. For instance, one day you may be working for a business or enjoying good fortune when the unthinkable happens and everything is taken away from you at once. You’ve heard of people in Bernie Madoff’s ponzi scheme who lost their jobs, investments, savings after his company was sued by federal regulators? Well this happened to them all over again!
Everything changed overnight with no warning signs – they had nothing left but new problems like unemployment that quickly snowballed into more catastrophes because nobody wants to hire someone without an employment history. In situations like these where society seems so unfair it can often seem better not having anything than risking going through such hardship on your own terms even if life would
At the point critical mass is reached everything shuts down, martial law is declared and the TEOTWAWKI spiral begins. Plan For The Mostly Likely Events. What does this mean for us? I would argue that most of our preparations should be for SHTF events. A TEOTWAWKI pandemic and a normal flu outbreak will be identical on the local level for one to two weeks; therefore my first preparation will ensure that we can sustain ourselves in place without any outside support while utilities are still available (a week). Next it’s important to prepare so if grid power goes out, or there’s an EMP event such as solar flare – which could occur at anytime- then we’ll have enough supplies here with no immediate need to
The Apocalypse is coming, so buy from us.
I have been lucky to only experience one hurricane, which was a mild category 1. I know that Houston will not be safe from the next storm and it’s important for me to prepare ahead of time so my family doesn’t go hungry or suffer loss if we lose power again. The moral in this story is preparedness; since you never know when disaster may strike – even though most likely scenarios are more probable than others- all potential disasters should still by planned against with some degree of readiness regardless!
When you’re planning a huge project, it’s easy to overlook the small risks that could come back and bite you in the butt. It can be tempting to think “big picture” but all those minor details will inevitably add up if left unchecked; which is why it’s important not only plan for high probability events, like an unanticipated snafu with your IT provider or supply chain partner who might lead to delays on production lines. But also low-probability risk scenarios such as natural disasters (a tsunami) or manmade catastrophes (terrorist attack). Think of these less likely occurrences as black swans: improbable yet always possible – so don’t forget about them!